Charles Dickens - The Trainer & the Racehorse TV - The Belles of St Trinian’s 1954 - Masterminds TV - Australian Families of Crime TV - Tommy Cooper - Benjamin Disraeli - Monsters TV - James Ellroy - Gonzo @ the Derby TV - Spiting Image TV - Sporting Greats TV - Clare Balding’s Secrets of a Suffragette TV - Searching for Shergar TV - Daily Telegraph - Edward & Mrs Simpson TV - Riding a Dream TV - All the Queen’s Horses TV - H M Queen: A Remarkable Life TV - The Real Peaky Blinders TV -
Drinking tents were full, glasses began to clink in carriages, hampers to be unpacked, tempting provisions to be set forth, knives and forks to rattle, champagne corks to fly, eyes to brighten that were not dull before, and pickpockets to count their gains during the last heat. The attention so recently strained on one object of interest, was now divided among a hundred; and, look where you would, there was a motley assemblage of feasting, talking, begging, gambling and mummery. Charles Dickens, Nicholas Nickleby, re Hampton race-course
The most charismatic trainer of our age – Henry Cecil – and his partnership with the greatest racehorse ever seen – Frankel. Together they created a legend. The Trainer and the Racehorse ***** Channel 4 2015
His stride was over a foot and a half longer than the average racehorse. Henry admitted to a colleague he had never seen anything like it. ibid.
Since my racehorses are there, I shall be able to visit them – and Fatima – at the same time. The Belles of St Trinian’s 1954 starring Alastair Sim & Joyce Grenfell & George Cole & Hermione Baddeley & Betty Ann Davis & Sid James et al, director Frank Launder, Arab bloke
1He targeted the richest day in horseracing. And pulled off the biggest betting scam in the history of American sport. Masterminds: A Day at the Races, 2003
On Breeders’ Cup day 2002 one lucky better beat the odds and became the only winner of the Pick 6 Multi-Million Dollar Jackpot. ibid.
Mastermind Chris Harn had found a way to turn a 1,000,000 to 1 longshot into a $3,000,000 sure thing. ibid.
Armed with a degree in computer programming Chris Harn joins Autotote Systems. ibid.
He now manipulates the system to copy the winning serial numbers on to the test tickets. ibid.
His win turns out to be too big. ibid.
Autotote questions all employees. When Harn fails to explain his presence in the office on Breeder’s Cup Day he is immediately fired. ibid.
Victoria Club, Melbourne April 21 1976: Inside the Victoria Club in Queen’s Street Melbourne bookmakers and punters are meeting to pay off bets ... Security guards are delivering millions of dollars in cash. Australian Families of Crime s1e5: Dockers and Death, Nine Network 2010
The Great Bookie Robbery was Australia’s largest single hold-up. ibid.
First in line for his cut – Les Kane – a member of the notorious Painters and Dockers Union whose reign over the Melbourne underground was at its peak in the 1970s. ibid.
I backed a horse today at twenty to one. He came in twenty past four. Tommy Cooper
The blue ribbon of the turf. Benjamin Disraeli, re Derby
Off-track betting was still illegal. It was a high-stakes racket. Bookmakers would pay as much as twelve-hundred dollars a week for access. Mobsters: Mickey Cohen, Biography 2008
The race-wire broadcasts the results to bookmaking runs throughout Los Angeles. So that people could lay bets up to the last moment. It was split-second timing. And Mickey [Cohen] was the king. James Ellroy, author LA Confidential
May 1st 1970: I took the expressway up to the track; I drove very fast … Gonzo @ The Derby, ESPN short 2016
In 1970 Hunter S Thompson went to the Kentucky Derby and he changed sports journalism and broadcasting for ever. ibid.
‘Thousands of people fainting, crying, copulation, trampling each other and fighting with broken whiskey bottles.’ ibid.
The Kentucky Derby is Decadent & Depraved. ibid. Hunter
‘We become the story.’ ibid. Steadman
Sorry, Miss Kendal, you can’t go in the enclosure – you are not wearing a silly hat. Spitting Image s6e3, Dimbleby and Felicity Kendal at Royal Ascot, ITV 1989
‘I love the competition in racing … You can feel the power of this beautiful animal.’ Sporting Greats: Frankie Dettori
‘He seems to be able to take himself to another level.’ ibid. Luca Cumani
100 years ago Britain’s greatest national event was stopped in its tracks by a very public, very shocking and ultimately fatal act of protest. At the height of the 1913 Epsom Derby in front of thousands of spectators a lone figure walked into the path of the galaping horses. Clare Balding’s Secrets of a Suffragette, Channel 4 2018
Rumour has it that somewhere in this bog lie the remains of one of the world’s greatest racehorses: Shergar. Shergar disappeared one winter’s night in 1983 at the height of the trouble taken from its stable by an armed gang, never to be seen again. Now 35 years on Ireland is in a very different place. Searching for Shergar, BBC 2018
After a couple of impressive wins Shergar was chosen as the stable’s Derby runner. ibid.
‘He was one of the best horses over the last 100 years.’ ibid. Lester Piggott
The King George was the first time the shareholders got to see their asset in action. ibid.
1982 was Shergar’s first breeding season and mares were flown in from all over the world. He covered 44 mares at a staggering £80,000 a time. ibid.
‘There was a knock on the door and these gangsters came in with guns.’ ibid. head lad
O’Brien Hails Great Galileo: Galileo, the brilliant Vodaphone winner who boasts qualities his trainer Aiden O’Brien has never before seen in a horse, is to attempt the coveted Anglo-Irish Derby double before embarking on a campaign of mile-and-a-quarter races that could establish him as a champion on both sides of the Atlantic.
The Sadler’s Wells colt came in for the highest praise from O’Brien and jockey Michael Kinane as they digested Saturday’s Classic performance that established the three-year-old as the clear leader of his generation. Daily Telegraph article 2001
End of the line for Sadler’s Wells jinx: It was a long wait but when it arrived it was well worth it. Sadler’s Wells, Europe’s most outstanding middle-distance sire and leading stallion on no fewer than 10 occasions, finally filled the only serious gap in his progeny’s list of honours on Saturday – the Epsom Derby [Galileo]. Daily Telegraph article Marcus Armytage 2001
1Galileo’s Irish Derby Stroll: Galileo gave jockey Mick Kinane his first Budweiser Irish Derby victory when crushing the opposition in the style of a champion at The Curragh yesterday. Daily Telegraph article J A McGrath 1st July 2001
Galileo’s stock soars to new high: Galileo is becoming one of hose mythical beasts who outshine the tens of thousands of mere humans who come to see him run. But he is also big business on the hoof, which is why his owners are concerned as much as turning him into racing’s first $100 million stallion as they are with the romance of this year’s Breeder’s Cup in New York. Daily Telegraph article 28 July 2001 Paul Hayward
Joey: You know their Royal Highnesses are most anxious to stop you racing over fences.
Edward: Well that’s all very well but I must have a bit of fun you know. Edward & Mrs Simpson I: The Little Prince, Thames TV 1978
My name is Khadijah Mellah and I’m 18 and I’m a student … Part of my life has been proving people wrong. Riding a Dream, ITV 2019
‘The Magnolia Cup: it is a charity race but it is at Glorious Goodwood in front of the crowd on TV and we would really like you to do it, if you would be up for it.’ ibid. stable lady
It is hard … I hadn’t had enough experience at all. At all. ibid.
25/1: the first hijab-wearing jockey ever. ibid.